This bread is a real winner! But first, we have news:
Thanks to everyone who left a comment last week on my first ever giveaway! I'm happy to announce that the winner of the Louis Armstrong recording is John Mark! John Mark, send me your address at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll get this on its way to you.
Now, for some serious breadlove that you may have heard about already, but if you haven't, I hope you take note.
This recipe came out in The New York Times back in 2006. Wow! That's a long time for me to completely ignore something so wonderful. I'm not proud about it. But I'm a full convert now, and I hope you will be too. It's Jim Lahey's no-knead bread.
This dough will not be like other doughs you've made and known, the ones you have to slap around and add copious amounts of flour to in order for it to look like it will turn into a sturdy bread. This dough is made mostly of air, so you're ordered not to touch it much at all. And you know what? Dough made mostly of air makes the best, most artful bread. You get the holes and the texture in between all the holes that you probably have always wanted, but just didn't realize it yet. Making the bread takes a little planning because of the time involved, but very--very little effort. (I'm going to try Celeste's tips for baking a similar loaf next time without preheating the oven!) And it's so much cheaper and really even better quality than the same-looking loaves sold at the store. Try it! You might end up fancying yourself a baker.
It makes perfect toast like this...
that you can top with this...
...and then do this. What could possibly be wrong with that?